The New Year is a popular time for many people to set goals for the year ahead, especially when it comes to their own health and fitness. As we approach the end of 2016's first month, even our best intentions sometimes start to fall off the rails! So, we thought we'd set you up with 10 great tips to help you stay on the right path to success!

1. Be Realistic

We often fall short of our goals because, in our excitement, we often set a goal that's unattainable in the first place. For instance, resolving to NEVER eat your favourite food again is just setting yourself up for failure (or at least misery). Instead strive for a goal that is realistic and manageable. In the case of your favourite food, perhaps you'll reduce how often you eat it, so that you still get to enjoy it once in a while.

2. Plan Ahead

Don't wait to make your resolutions all at once on New Year's Eve, when you're all caught up in the excitement of the new year. Plan when you are in the mindset to set goals. Don't be afraid to set your goals at a time when it's right for you.

3. Outline Your Plan

Decide how you will deal with the temptation to skip that exercise class or have that piece of cake. This could include calling on a friend for help, practicing positive thinking or reminding yourself how your goal will be impacted if you succumb to the temptation.

4. Make a Pros and Cons List

It often helps to write down you list and post it where you can see it, to keep your motivation strong. You can keep adding items to your list and ask others to contribution to it as well. Carry your list with you and refer to it when you need help keeping your resolve.

5. Talk About It

Don't keep your goals a secret. Tell your family and your friends so that they can support your resolve to change for the better or improve your health. When you tell people what your goals are, often you find another person with a similar goal. It's always great when there are two of you to motivate each other.

6. Reward Yourself

This doesn't mean that you can eat an entire box of chocolates if your resolution is to eat a more balance diet. Instead, celebrate your success by treating yourself to something you enjoy that doesn't contradict your resolution. If you've been sticking to a promise to eat more healthy foods, then reward yourself with some new fitness clothing or a movie with a friend.

7. Track Your Progress

Keep track of each small success. Short-term goals are easier to keep and each small accomplishment  will help keep you motivated. For instance, instead of focusing on losing 30 pounds, focus on losing the first five. Keep a food journal to help you stay on track and give yourself a reward each time you lose 5 pounds towards your final goal.

8. Don't Beat Yourself Up

Obsessing over the occasional slip won't help you achieve your goal. Think about doing the best you can each day and take it one day at a time.

9. Stick To It

Experts say it takes 21 days for a new activity to become a habit and six months for it to become part of your personality. It won't happen overnight, so you'll need to be patient and persistent!

10. Keep Trying

If, after only a few weeks, you've totally run out of steam when it comes to working towards your goals, don't despair. Start over again! Recommit yourself for 24 hours. You can do anything for 24 hours! Then add the next 24 hours. These 24 hour increments will soon build on each other and, before you know it, you'll be back on track!!

What are your 2016 goals? Are they career related? Health related? Fitness related? Financial? What are you doing to help you achieve your goals? I'd love to hear!

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